That's some printer there
Can it print € notes I wonder...?
The Irish parliament is under fire for recklessly splashing €808,000 on a gigantic printer that it couldn’t even fit through its doors. Officials were forced to spend a further €230,000 knocking holes in and taking door frames off the parliament's historic Leinster House in Dublin to create enough room for the monstrosity to …
Certainly seems capable of consuming them...
I don't think we can blame the printer for peoples ineptitude. €230,000 to poke holes in the existing building. Surely it would have been vastly cheaper just to build the printer its own detached house?
I do marvel at how much more efficient the state could be if their employees spent our tax money like it was their own money - a little more thought, a little more care, and so much more could be achieved in terms of bang for buck.
employees spent our tax money like it was their own money -
1.) People don't do a good job of that - which is why we have a lottery and gambling ads on TV.
2.) Domestic short term spending is very different from commercial or long-term finance
3.) Institutional spending is under the thumb of committees and rules, not ordinary staff members- which is why El Reg's comments section has so many stories of institutions spending fortunes and waiting months for cheap items that staff members could get straight off the shelf at Curry's.
I've often said that a lot of what people think of as "government waste" or "red tape" is actually the result of rules put in place to prevent any appearance of fraud or self-dealing. Corporations just accept that a certain amount of money and equipment will walk out the door, and write it off, but that's not acceptable when taxpayer money is involved.
Agreed. Local authority and central govt. purchasing rules are based on trying to achieve zero malfeasance and giving zero trust. Even if the cost of preventing fraud and not trusting staff outweighs the savings from preventing small frauds. I once pointed out to an officer that we spent so much time being accountable we were at risk of not having time to do anything to be accountable for.
The obvious examples.
1) We'd used a local window cleaner for years and employed a brilliant daily cleaner for the building. But eventually the top brass decided that we had to use contract cleaners. Which costed twice as much (charged to our budget), were never reliable and did a rubbish job.
2) I used to research and source our smaller IT items myself. Making sure I got the best deals for the right kit. The along came the corporate buyer. We had to use him ( his cost charged to our budget). Which took s much of my time as buying the stuff myself, because I had to make him understand what we needed. Something he struggled with. We were banned from buying almost everything ourselves. And for the few things we could ( mostly consumables or leads etc.) we were banned from using a well known tech catalogue - but he bought everything he acquired for us from the same company's other catalogue at usually a higher price than I could have got it for by shopping around +plus delivery which would have been zero if I'd just picked it up from one of the local shops on the way into work.. Frequently the item he ordered for us wasn't what we needed because he he never understood what we did and anyway always bought the same thing for all the different teams, irrespective of their use case.
The most that could have been wasted/stolen would have been a few 10s of pounds PA even with a serious amount of scheming by several layers of management. But the actual cost of preventing this was several hundred. And the kit bought was often wrong for the job.
But hey, the corporate watchdogs were happy.
Agreed as well. There a plenty of hard working, knowledgeable and well-intending government workers. But there also are plenty which aren't any of that. I've got plenty of counter examples, ranging from ignorance and stupidity to huge indifference and downright fraud. The uncomfortable truth is that despite all the rules it's still pretty easy to 'persuade' government officials to certain buying decisions. In some case it might even be easier as there are so many rules to hide behind.
You could add a combined 1a and 2a that people don't do a very good job of domestic medium- and long-term spending; either with the purchase itself (e.g. spending tens of thousands more on a car because it has better cupholders, radio, and never-used AWD; buying a house for cheap fitted furniture, fitted cheaply, and occasional rooms that become used as indoor sheds), or with the terms of the loan to enable the purchase.
Having friends in Dublin, I can assure you that property prices in Dublin are indeed what one might refer to as "proper silly".
I have one friend who is fortunate enough to own a one bedroom flat on O'Connell Street. She is able to get €1,500 a week on AirBnB if she's short of cash.
Of course, logic clearly dictates that:
Big expensive printer -> fast and very high quality -> can print lots of notes -> big expensive printer pays itself.
The printer is essentially free and the parliament made an excellent investment.
Dumb taxpayers just don’t unerstand economics and all that tricky stuff with numbers. I’m gonna propose my parliament that they’ll buy a bigger printer. We’ll see who’s laughing then.
I used to work for a company that made HW, including big half-a-rack (21U) boxes that could be delivered as a pair in a full rack. Dimensions and weight - e.g., elevator ratings - were always checked. We always checked, for such deals. A vendor selling such a specialized and oversized piece of equipment should have checked, IMHO. They were stuck with storing the thing for some time at their expense.
But to the best of my recollection we never sold to a Parliament, who may make their own laws, of course...
There seems to be a conflict of interest whenever democratic lawmakers meet mathematics or laws of Nature...
I once looked at Costco's website just for fun to see what's the most expensive TV they sell.
It was £150,000. It's wall covering. Something like 250". It takes a team of four to install.
And they don't accept an order without someone first coming to your home (or business more likely) and checking whether there is enough space to install it safely.
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That's because "consumer rights"* of at least the phone call or credit card request to "return and refund". So yeah, they do that check (plus selling opportunity for the other £100k off sound and cinema equipment, minibar and hotdog machine).
A business though, you sign the contract, and you don'ts gets to returns.
*Depending on country, but AFAIK even America has chargeback on credit card purchase returns to store.
That's not how dealing with government clients works. The mechanism is simply, they write a tender, you read that, estimate how much you can charge for the stuff the didn't specify and then you respond with a price based on that. Once you win the tender you either do the bare minimum forcing then to pay for extra stuff to get a working solution. The customer either pays up or cancels the whole thing in which case you claim breach of contract and get your money without doing the work. In both cases there will be outrage and newspaper articles, but that doesn't matter because with the next tender they will hire you again if you manage to be the cheapest on paper.
When you reply to the tender you will indicate your proposed cost, conditions of sales, tender terms etc.
Even if you include delivery and installation you will have a lovely set of exclusions that makes sure it's the CUSTOMERS responsibility to have somewhere to put it, suitable utilities services, air conditioning, suitable floors etc.
As a vendor you cannot carry the can for the customer being completely unable to organise a pissup in a brewery.
It's a digital replacement for an offset printer, so not just a colour laser on steroids, but more of an integrated, high volume, high quality print publication system. Presumably the idea was to save document publication costs in the long run by bringing the process in house. As if document publication is a core function of a government.
That would be a bonus for government.
Even if modern PDF readers correctly rendered old PDFs (A function MSFT apparently gave up on by the mid 90s for Word docs), it would still be convenient to quietly change a few "MUST"s to "SHOULD"s to "MAY"s to "MUST NOT"s, suiting changes in policy without the messiness of legislative debate.
Let alone official reports on whether we were (and had always been) at war with Eurasia or Eastasia.
(yes, these things would of course be digitally signed, so only one can play, and certificate expiration would take care of the copies some paranoid had squirreled away.)
If only someone had invented a document format that can be read on screens of varying sizes and accessibility levels and kept up to date from a central server so everyone one has access to the latest and most accurate info. We could call it HTML.
That's what I was thinking. Although they've cocked up there might be some sense to it, but I'm not sure you need a printer that fucking big for what I'm thinking. I'm thinking they are either bringing all their printing in house, which is fine and a good idea. But you need to pay your staff more money if they are going to use it as although you may considering it a cost saving, you're now forcing your work staff into essentially doing more work.
Bringing all the printing in house isn't just a good idea, but you can now sell your services as a "printers". All the election ballot papers can be printed there and you can then advertise yourselves as being the best "printers" for all other councils in the area. I suspect they might be considering starting up their own reprographics service.
That sounds like feature creep to me
Potentially. It's one of those things that can be done. For instance, National Air Traffic Services are privatised(ish - UKGov owns a Golden Share). They build and develop a lot of tech in house. They also sell consultancy, design and training services to other countries who are either building out modern ATC for the first time (Africa) or looking to upgrade.
If you can develop the business model and establish as a local specialist/centre of excellence then it can generate revenue and give you a quality internal facility.
On the other hand, buying a printer with the idea "we can sell time on it to local councils" will never go anywhere unless you've brought in some staff who actually know about printing and can run your internal print business (not department, needs treating as a business endeavour) to a standard which can compete on price and quality with private print shops.
On the other hand, buying a printer with the idea "we can sell time on it to local councils" will never go anywhere unless you've brought in some staff who actually know about printing and can run your internal print business (not department, needs treating as a business endeavour) to a standard which can compete on price and quality with private print shops.
No no no no no.
Firstly, you nationalise all the private print shops, so competition is not a concern. Then you give everyone big pay rises and guarantee their jobs. This means that they can live happy lives, free from the pressure of deadlines, quality control or management reviews.
It may then be necessary to outlaw privately-owned printing machines, to ensure that people still use the national printing service.
© Jeremy Corbyn
I guess like most parliaments they still need to print everything they need to vote about, or discuss, quickly, maybe because some last changes and additions. Because even if the probably have also laptops and tablets paid by taxpayers they want the printed version - the electronic devices are then used to watch NSFW stuff.
Having such kind of beast in-house may avoid to send the files outside, have them printed, and all the copies than transported to the destination. It could speed up things - however if you read the requirements they asked for really an high-end system capable of high-quality color prints - and you wonder what kind of publications they are going to print on it.
I would not be surprised if someone thinks to print her or his electoral campaign stuff on it... at someone else's expenses.
You got there before me. Was there a justification for having print jobs actually within the building ( internal distribution costs, maybe)?
I can only think of when we had proper (UK) education authorities and they did stuff, there'd be a central print and reprographic service. Schools would get the print jobs that were beyond the local photocopier, or needed a bit of pro help in the layout, done there.
I think the council had something on a bigger scale too, for their stuff.
And it was a bloody sight cheaper and easier for us than getting a commercial job done,as happened later on. And a damned sight more user-friendly too.
>It's a digital replacement for an offset printer
It's not stated whether this is a replacement to an existing printer or as you suggest some bright sparks idea of bringing the process in-house.
In either case, I doubt any one actually thought whether the best home for such a device and its supplies was the same building as the Parliament (or did someone think that you could install this in the basement and it would provide under floor heating...)
Mind you, given the size of the beast, I assume its new home is on the ground floor; I do hope someone did do the necessary floor (point) loading tests and calculations...
Large format printers i.e. those 44" to 60" wide can easily costs in the range $3,000-$10,000 or more.
Needed by all those people for whom A3 is a small format (designers, architects, graphics artists, photographers, etc.) and who can't outsource the print to an external shop. And of course those external printing shops themselves.
You have to be careful about those printers size and weight too, before ordering one - and plan carefully how to bring it to its installation place. a 60" printer can be easily over 2m long, and weight over 150kg. Often they are designed to clear (barely) a standard 80cm door, but you have take into account if the path across the door is straight or not.
"...external printing shops..."? What print shops?
There used to be two print shops in every street, but not nowadays. As secretary of a committee I used to use them, but nowadays committees are run by email. Often there is only one copy of a document in a committee meeting.
I see not a few print shops around to print photos, signage, posters, ads, banners, etc. Where do you think all those visual displays you see in roads, shops, malls and trade shows come from?
There is an excellent range of wide and flatbed printer to print such material, and it has become cheaper to have them made.
These are not the old print shops with faxes, photocopiers, and a few A4 laser printers.
>Large format printers i.e. those 44" to 60" wide can easily costs in the range $3,000-$10,000 or more.
At those prices, you are talking about small volume print runs, need to add a nought or more for the high volume stuff and 4+ colours...
Even black-and-white printers can reach that price level if the usage is heavy enough. Printers have a certain rated monthly output. I work for a large academic department and we average somewhere around 400,000 pages a year. We have two large Ricoh high-speed printer/copier/scanner units that according to my inventory sheets cost about $8,500 each. They're each around 4' long and just fit through a normal doorway; they weigh over 400 pounds.
My last school had an OCI printer that cost the best part of £250k when new, it churned through about 100,000 pages a month at about 80 pages a minute.
When it died, the school replaced it with a couple of Panasonic colour lasers that cost about £5k a piece with their collator units etc and they really couldn't cope with the volume, we had engineers in pretty much every week fixing them
Not sure of which depratment, but past track record indicates it was probably someone in (Anti)Social Services who decided to to burn through a very very large print run that really should have been handed over to the dedicated print shop in Block B on their newly budgeted\paid\installed for Colour Laserjet.
This poor innocent little printer* had it's hopes & dreams of being used for short & medium print jobs in a comfortable office, ripped & cruelly shredded from it as it was forced into bondage producing the flyers & information sheets required, during the day & loaded up to run into the evening.
It's only respite came from the replenishment of consumables, clearing the increasing amount of jams caused by over-overheating & worn paper feed seperation rollers & possibly at least one fuser (Or they ignored it's alerts & reset it's count).
No flags were raised by Manglement over why their new printer needed toners on an almost daily basis until the day it collapsed seeping toner, with rollers as shiney as Duncan Goodhews head, motors & bearings worn & grinding.
As it was still only 3 - 6 months old, HP were duely summoned, who took one look at the page count & declared it was no longer covered by warranty as the laser light that burns twice as bright burns half as long & you have burned it so very very brightly.
A repair quote was given that surpassed the cost of the machine & promptly rejected, so it was given the minimal action of a new maintenance kit by the IT Service Centre, put out to pasture for occasional jobs to which the thing would invariably jam from PTSD** & less than sympathetic frequent summons for another repair\service call from the wooden hut in the car park to deal with the noise & jammings of this POS that had to last them another 4.5 years to recoup its TCO, oblivious to AKA covering up the fact it was them that had destroyed it in the first place.
*Its not often I express sympathy for these devices.
** PTSD - Printer Totally Shagged Device.
The classic error when checking sizes is that things often come in some sort of packing case which adds size above, to the sides and below the basic device measurements. Then you need to have a device to lift and move the darned thing, which at 7.38 metres long is hardly something you could pick up on a standard pallet mover. It might well come as several parts, but given the length would be rather less than bendy to pass through a twisty access route. Clearance sizes need to be thought about very seriously. A survey would have been a wise, make that a very wise move, before the order was inked.
A survey would have been a wise, make that a very wise move, before the order was inked.
Especially in a listed building - or whatever the Irish equivalent of that is.
I've been involved in building services works in the UK Parliament (which is a services nightmare and needs urgent and seriously expensive maintenance doing to it sharpish) - and on other difficult sites. And you have issues like not being able to remove rusty galvanised steel water tanks because they're in a wooden roof structure (see Notre Dame for details of why you aren't allowed to play with cutting gear) - but anyway the replacements won't fit through any of the accesses. In that case we used the dead steel tanks as a mold to shape a GRP tank - which we literally formed inside it - then re-did the horrible pipework (that we could get to). Except that we couldn't even cut holes in the partitions to put the pipes through - which made that a nightmare as well.
I have conversations about access a lot. But even then there are mistakes, assumptions and just plain forgetfulness.
Like the time I sold someone a 2.8m tall water softener to fit in a 2.5m tall plantroom. To be fair, the plantroom was 3m tall when I sold it to them, they just hadn't consulted a structural engineer about the 10 tonne of plant they were planning to put in there - and he made them raise the floor by half a metre in order to fit the strengthening in. Apparently they took the 3m long box with the softener tank out of the room - raised the floor - and then carried it back in and put it on its side. Only noticing a couple of months later when they came to finally install it. Then they blamed me...
"What are they trying to print there?"
2 stories of the same type of situation:
- when I had my first house built, the guy in charge was a compete moron. I warned him the fuel tank would have to be fit *before* they closed the walls, just because I tried it and it wouldn't turn in the corridor if the walls were closed. Turned out he contemptuously told me "yes, yes, we know our jobs" and had it scheduled for fitting *after* walls were closed. And had people break the walls to fit it. And then asked them to redo the walls ... for free. Didn't go well. Moron.
- recently, we had to phase out an IBM DS8k disk system. And it had to go through the lift and yes, it was fully loaded with hard drives. Just before putting the first frame into the 1 ton lift, I told my colleague, in charge of that: "better check with the lift people if this is ok". As usual, he responded "no, no, no need, it'll be fine, it's a 1 ton lift !". He pushed the frame, the lift went down by 10 cm, all alarms being on !. Yes, the frame was quite a lot above 1 ton ... Needless to say, no way to extract the frame, you have to extract *every* drive one by one. He learnt a lesson this day :)
Early 80s we had a VAX 11/780 delivered to our office. When it arrived it was clear that the packing crate wouldn't fit in the ordinary lift, but measurements suggested that the uncrated unit would just squeeze in. It was a bit over the lift's max weight, but the supplier reckoned that there would be at least a 50% safety margin for the quoted value, so all would be OK.
The VAX was uncrated in the lobby, slid into the lift, someone reached round and pushed the button for the 2nd floor and then sprinted up the stairs to wait for it. The doors opened to reveal the lift stopped about 5cm below floor level. 5cm may not seem like much, but when you have to lift a 700kg CPU unit which has about 3cm clearance all round for access, things get tricky...
They managed it, eventually, with some creative levering and much pulling and swearing.
In the early days of commercial computers David Brown Tractors got one, probably an Elliot. It was too heavy for the lift but they arranged to haul it up the lift shaft. It broke free from its rope and fell. The bloke who'd tied it on fainted. It must have been a family trait, his daughter was in my class at school and at the mention of the word "blood" keeled over off her lab-stool.
"In the early days of commercial computers David Brown Tractors got one, probably an Elliot. It was too heavy for the lift but they arranged to haul it up the lift shaft. It broke free from its rope and fell. The bloke who'd tied it on fainted. It must have been a family trait, his daughter was in my class at school and at the mention of the word "blood" keeled over off her lab-stool."
Ah ah, good one. Reminds me of my students vacation. I was a mover, back then ...
The big deal for a mover is move a piano. Can't dismantle it, and it can happen it doesn't fit the lift of the stairway.
My buddies had this one climb, via rope and an outside window all the way to the 9th floor.
The rope broke at the 8th floor. The legend said it was still doing music hours after the incident ...
My dad used to work for a big furniture business a very long time ago.
One day, all the movers were called to a demo of a new way to deliver pianos to upper floors.
The method was, remove the upstairs window, attach hoists to either side of the window and hoist the piano up on a platform..
The demo went well, until about halfway up the front wall of the house came down.
Adelaide Uni had a Thinking Machines CM5 on the ground floor, and once they got bored of playing with the blinkenlights someone stuck a label on it saying "move to $JUNKROOM" on the first floor. Someone got it as far as the loading bay, where there was a freight elevator. All well and good, except the freight elevator was only about 1 yard cubed, load capacity 250kg, and was mainly used for milk crates.
The only other lifts in the building could only be reached by going outside and there was no route from any of them to the storeroom that could take the weight (even if the lifts could), which they knew because they'd already had to carry a VAX out in pieces because the only route with a strong enough floor to get it in had been walled off with a firewall.
it spent over a decade in that loading bay, where periodically undergrads would clean it and play with the blinkenlights (which was fun) before it was taken away. No one would ever did adit to putting that label on it.
Something similar is what caused the mess at Fukushima.
GE Engingineers were highly alarmed at the vulnerable positioning of the diesel generators in the basement during construction and wanted them repositioned on higher ground. TEPCO management patted them on the head and ignored them because their marvellous seawall could withstand any tsunami.(Never mind that the GE guys were more worried about flooding coming DOWN the hill and filling the basements.)
B2?? Small posters, then. It is probably capable of running SRA2 as well, thus with an automated print finishing unit also capable of A5 and A4 booklets.
Nice machine, if the truth be told, but Japanese, not one of the "gold-standard" German presses. Heidelberg have lost a lot of ground to the competition, I'm afraid.
Almost as if it was tailored for a specific supplier and model to win
I'm shocked I tell you, shocked that you could imply that such a thing would *ever* happen in a civil service/Government setting!
 Lets face it, we all know it happens and some of us have (allegedly) done it to get round idiotic procurement rules. We just never, ever admit it.
Parliaments have quite heavy print requirements. Many copies of bills are printed and circulated before votes, then laws are published on paper - again with many copies.
Parliamentary records (eg Hansard) are also published on paper and many copies circulated. Given the amount of bollocks politicians spout (should I be using "blarney" in this case?) every day , the records alone are going to be a lot of paper.
And all this stuff needs to happen fairly quickly, so even if the printing is off-site it has to be fairly close, to keep the turnaround times low.
Yes, yes, I know it should be electronic, but the theory is that paper copies are much harder to interfere with.
Of course, whether any of this output is actually read by our esteemed representatives is another matter entirely...
Are we sure that's a digital printer? That ain't a printer - it's an industrial press.
Looks identical to an offset litho press - I used to work in print.
Each lump of that thing will be printing one colour, the fifth lump will be for a fancy Pantone colour or spot varnish.
Mind... you should see a magazine /newspaper press if you think that's big.
Of the tine l got my first 32 inch wide-screen telly. CRT of course.
My excitement on the day of delivery was soon diminished when l realized how heavy and how big it was.
Of course l lived on the fourth floor, no lift.
A promise of so.e beers and a friend was soon recruited to help me.
I remember some bloke selling his telly on Ebay not understanding why I was upset with him for the telly being larger than he said it was. (It was a 32" instead of the advertised 28"). The answer, of course, being that a 28" widescreen CRT is the largest thing that I can grab ahold of and move on my own. The 32" completely changed all the plans for moving it about. As it was, the TV stand bowed in the middle under the weight of the thing. It was well north of 60kg, IIRC.
It was well north of 60kg, IIRC
Our tropical fish tank is a 350L bow-fronted one. One day I casually mentioned to t'wife that it (tank+water+stand) weighed well over 1/2 tonne..
She spent the next week worrying about whether it would make the lounge floor collapse (our house, unlike many of the others in the same area, isn't built on a concrete raft - it has deep foundations because of the subsidence issues that the older-build houses have had due to the clay deforming under the concrete raft. So under the lounge there's a good 1.2m gap before you hit the clay.
We still have a huge - about 5' high, 6' wide - very solid and heavy oak book case we bought at auction soon after we were married. We were only in a second floor flat, not fourth but the stair case had two flights and two landings per floor so it was a tight fit and did I say it was heavy. It's amazing what a few young students can do when they put their minds to it although it still has a scrape of paint from the staircase wall.
When I got my first flat (on 1st floor) one of the first things to be ordered and arrive was a 32" Sony CRT TV. when I opened the door there was one delivery bkoke with a small van who said "..you're going to gave to give me a hand with this...".
In the box it just about managed to fit the stairwell (as the bannister was in the way). I had to invite a friend round later to not only see my new flat, but also help me lift the TV onto the stand. Many years later when I replaced it with a plasma (not my best move ever) I told my borther he could have it as long as he could get it down the stairs!
Many years ago I was told by an IBM printer engineer that they'd wanted some new posh vans, with tail lifts, for deliveries. Ford quoted for the Cargo but IBM management in their wisdom looked at the carrying capacity and opted for a cheaper quote using a Transit as they only needed to load two printers at the most.
First one arrives and amidst managers and guests a printer is wheeled out, onto the tail lift and sits there with the front of the van rising into the air. You need to check *all" the dimensions and weights!
Having watched a removals company engaged by the bean counters at the closing down sale of a world renowned college of printing (I'm not bitter - much), rather than them using the company we specified, I can well believe it.
Standard 5 tonne forklift under the frame of a 7 tonne Windmöller flexo... the forklift goes up in the air, not the press. "Patrick... I think we'll be needing a bigger forker for this one." Bodgitt and Scarper we named them as we watched with tears in our eyes as our beloved machine printing classroom was slowly gutted. God knows what state the equipment was in by the time it reached the buyer. They managed to drop a rotogravure press from about 2 metres up when some straps broke. Left a sizeable dent in the car park, probably fractured the frame.
A similar farce could often be seen at Dowty with upwards of five blokes hanging off the back of small forklift when they needed to lift bed off one of the big Dixi jig borers for servicing. The real coup-de grace came however when the hydraulics division moved offsite. Everything was going well until they moved the big flow rigs...That's when they rediscovered the concealed staircases in the floor to the old air raid shelters.
"Suspect it happens more than you think"
On a more mundane IT front, think of the struggles you see of several people being drafted into trying to fit heavy servers into racks. A HSE/OSH disaster waiting to happen.
"small" lifters for IT kit exist. I browbeat $orkplace into buying one. It's a godsend. (Serverlift and Tawi are the 2 main players for the curious)
The productivity boost from being able to install/remove a box without "assistance" wobbling all over the shop, any time you need it (rather than having to find people) is worth it - and they're cheaper than _one_ OSH fine or injury claim. Then there's the factor that with a 200kg payload you tend to find a lot of other uses for them too (like lifting AC equipment into place, etc)
probably fractured the frame
I've had a Cisco 5509 switch arrive more lozenge-shaped than rectangular - apparently marking something as 'fragile' means something different to international shippers..
 It had obviously been dropped from a height onto one corner. The frame was bent sideways and all the line cards were cracked in half. Utterly unusable. Just as well that it was only a backup spare in case our building move damaged the existing switch (it didn't).
 Not that 5509 switches were particularly fragile.
I've mentioned this before but still relevant,
Mainframe site on first floor long used to delivering large bits of kit through removable window. This time it was an EMC 5500 full of 5 1/4 drives, batteries, PSs etc and it was a heavy bugger (in both imperial and SI). The box was to be lifted, inside a cage, by a crane. Large man in the cage ready to push box out when it reached the window opening. Unfortunately this time the cage was not quite high enough and when the large man pushed the box caught the lip of the window and the cage moved backwards, box fell out of the cage ...oops and was effectively destroyed. Later it was revealed the box was insured by weight not value...oops2. (Disclaimer: I was not the large man)
A mate of mine spent a lot of time shopping for an entertainment unit to house his large screen TV and stereo equipment. It arrived at his new house just before the family was ready to move in so he invited me over to help him set everything up and have a night where we could drink beer and scotch, eat pizza and turn up the volume without upsetting his missus.
The TV fitted perfectly. Then it came time to install the stereo amp, pre-amp, CD and turntable. The stereo and pre-amp were designed to be rack mounted so wouldn't fit in the spaces for them. There was no cut-outs to run cables between the amp, pre-amp and CD. We had to set everything up on the top of the entertainment unit so we could play music. The next day we had to take the amp and pre-amp to a machine shop to have them mill off the rack mount lugs which meant we had to remove the front plate from both. Then we had to make cut-outs in the back of the shelves to route the cables. For the last 20 years I have paid out on him every time he has gone to buy anything that is size dependent or needs assembly. (BTW last month he retired the entertainment unit).
...But on a much, much smaller scale.
I used to work at the Institute of Hearing Research, and we ordered a giant poster printer. Much like the reasons I suspect they got their massive printer, it was costing the institute a fortune having posters printed (scientific conferences, public engagement, various seminars...) so we decided to in-house the process. It did actually save us a small fortune, and paid for itself.
we carefully measured the dimensions, took into account the weight, but when it arrived we were not prepared for the giant wooden container that appeared to be assembled with railway sleepers and nails forged in the core of a collapsing star.
We had to eventually let the delivery drivers go, and dismantle the box ourselves, then enlist the help of around a dozen strong students to carry the thing up the stairs. Sounds simple enough, but the whole process took two days.
.. It didn't have a reduce feature? But I blame sales/pre-sales and the customer equally. One for not doing pre-qual and a site survey, the other for not insisting on it. That's how accidents happening, eg not checking floor loadings and having a spontaneous printer relocation moment.
Some years ago my local hospital having spent millions on a major rebuilding project invited a royal dignitary and the associated press pack to open the new wing. It was only on the organised walk around that they discovered that the doors in the corridors were 1/4 inch narrower than the beds
Instead of being just one more snarky article about government stupidity - you could have pointed out what all the other publications I read failed to do mentioned: the exact nature of the "printer" which is actually more of a printing press. Since Komori also makes presses for printing money, you could have had fun with being smarter than the other publications.
If you're emitting ridiculous amounts of paperwork - mine was in an insurance company, so low quality but high volume - you stop measuring print speed by pages and start measuring by metres.
Our reprographics department (high quality digital print) had a similar cock up because while they checked the size, they didn't check the weight of the central module for their new toy. We had to tear up and replace a reinforced path through the building from the loading docks.
(Sorry, I'm still watching Battlestar Galactica.)
The district council I worked for in the early '90s had a print room. It was a huge effing thing in a basement, far bigger than the computer room with the mainframes, and frankly more interesting to me although I was only in it a couple of times. I don't know how they got those machines in there. It was smaller than the print room of a local newspaper I'd visited as a school child, but roughly the same layout.
They also employed a team of three PR folk, three pretty females, the youngest of which was specifically employed to scan actual newspapers for any mention of our council. She'd cut out any newspaper article mentioning us, paste them to a sheet and then pass it to the councillors. Social media didn't start with social media.
At one previous job, we had a couple of 42U racks which needed to be installed on the 5th floor - pretty sure we did do a survey before delivery - but the only way they were coming in was on top of the lift. Remarkably, this worked.
Later, we needed to move them to the other side of the office (an adjoining building) to put into a more appropriate environment (a/c, decent power etc) and as they wouldn't fit through the internal doors, a few of us manhandled each rack out onto a narrow external balcony which ran across both buildings, and back in the other side. This entailed swivelling the racks round on the balcony wall. Only a small risk of them crashing to the street 5 storeys below..
One of my jobs was to relocate the contents of a wire room from level 5 to level 11 when we leased level 5 to another company. It had two large racks. We emptied the racks and relocated the equipment then someone decided we needed one of the racks on level 12 for future expansion. Getting the empty rack out of the wire room was easy. We took off the side panels, doors and removable shelves to make it lighter, tilted it, and carried it out through the door. When we got to the lift the rack wouldn't fit (too tall). Someone decided we could take it up the fire stairs. I laughed. One of the other techos grabbed a couple of burly builders, already on site working on the floor the rack was relocating to, who agreed to help. On level 5 we were able to get the rack into the fire stairs and with a bit of manoeuvring we managed to get to the 8th floor. So far, so good... However, from the 8th floor the layout of the fire stairs changed very slightly and we could no longer get the rack up the stairs. We couldn't even get the rack out the door. Back down to level 5 we go. In the end I went to my car and got my tool kit, dismantled the rack completely, loaded it in the lift, moved to its new location and reassembled (which was my suggestion in the first place), The other rack was dismantled and placed into storage...
Mine's the one with the tools in the pockets.
At one previous job, we had a couple of 42U racks which needed to be installed on the 5th floor
First exposure I had to any racks were Compaq racks that we'd ordered in the late 90's to house our shiny new servers. Ordered from Compaq themselves, we also ordered a decent-size UPS and an installation service from Compaq.
We then watched in horror as the installation muppets tried to install the UPS units in the *top* of the rack. When they realised that they couldn't lift them that far, they decided to lay the racks flat on their backs so that they could install the UPS and then lift the racks back up.
At that point we intervened and told them (in no uncertain terms) that the UPS units were going in the bottom of the racks and, if they carried on trying to put them in the top, we would refuse to sign off the install due to serious H&S failures.
Is it one of those printers that will outright refuse to print a black document even though it's just the Cyan toner that's run out? WIll it behave just like any other office printer and suddenly fall off the network and need to be turned off and on again to work, all because someone hasn't fixed its IP address? Maybe It's one of those that seems to not print certain PDFs because the driver's out of date.
> The Irish parliament is under fire for recklessly splashing €808,000 on a gigantic printer that it couldn’t even fit through its doors
That's the thing about the civil service, they don't think they have achieved anything without printing out something, lots of print-outs. Sometimes I would print-out stuff and then have to type it all back in again.
Immediately print important documents into the basement toilet filing cabinet with the 'beware the leopard' sign or does someone have to move the paper down there physically (because that would mean health and safety would also like to have words over the missing stairs and lights...).
Mines the one with the Unix manual bookmarked on the printer error codes page...
and the desire to discipline newly purchased IT kit into submission by letting them spend their first months in lonely dark basements? First those poor little electronic voting machines, now the printing giant; is it some secret way of making our electronic companions perform better? Did someone take the April 1 policy a bit too serious? Closet luddites? Well, at least the printer was allowed to come out after a while. I hope it has learned its lesson.
You purchase equipment for €800K and that doesn't include the vendor throwing in an engineer to check out the facility and a few techs to do the installation, setup and commissioning? Amazon delivery just droops it on the front stoop where the porch pirates can make off with it?
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